Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Guidelines

In the recent days and weeks there has been much interest and anticipation about President Obama’s announcement on Deferred Action. It is important to note that Deferred action does not provide lawful status or a pathway to citizenship. Only the United States Congress, acting through its legislative powers, can confer the process that comes with a pathway to attaining permanent lawful status. Until then, the following are guidelines the Department of Homeland Security has put forth as the application process gets under way August 15, 2012.

Pursuant to the Department of Homeland Security’s June 15, 2012 memorandum, in order for an individual to be considered for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the following guidelines must be met with respect to evidence, and supporting documents, showing that an individual:

1. Was under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;

2. Came to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday;

3. Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;

4. Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making their request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;

5. Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or their lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;

6. Are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and;

7. Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

It is important to keep in mind, USCIS retains the ultimate discretion on whether deferred action is appropriate in any given case.
For more information on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, contact the Immigration Department at Bailey & Galyen at (972) 642-7900.

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